Lakers Rumors: L.A. Would ‘Easily’ Part With D’Angelo Russell And Julius Randle
Is It Time For Lakers To Part Ways With Mitch Kupchak?
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers may have landed the second overall pick in the NBA Draft, but that alone won’t guarantee a return to prominence. They have a roster loaded with young talent and plenty of potential yet their four-year playoff drought hangs over the once-mighty franchise. If they want to rebuild quickly, president of basketball perations Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka may have to find a trade for some of their assets that brings back win-now pieces.

Specifically, it appears that Julius Randle and D’Angelo Russell could be on the trading block. The Lakers are likely to land a guard like Markelle Fultz or Lonzo Ball in the NBA draft and have Larry Nance Jr. ready to absorb Randle’s minutes, so it’s no surprise that those two are seen as the most expendable. Sam Smith, writing for NBA.com, mentioned just how available both players are, specifically in a trade for Indiana Pacers star Paul George:

The Lakers also would love to dump one of those big contracts that resulted in a management change. The talk among general managers is you can pretty easily get D’Angelo Russell and Julius Randle. Then simple. You give the Pacers Luol Deng to match salary with George and then throw in two former lottery picks, one from the Big 10 and the other from nearby Kentucky, and the Pacers can sell that as a rebuild.

It’s a little surprising to hear that the word on Randle and Russell is that either one could be had “pretty easily”, although Randle will be a restricted free agent next summer, so the Lakers could decide to move him rather than re-sign him to a new contract.

George himself will also be a free agent in 2018 and has long been linked to the Lakers, leading to rumors that the team will simply hold onto their assets rather than trade for him now. However, there is value in getting George to Los Angeles a year early, but it’s debatable whether the Lakers would part with both Russell and Randle, just as it’s not clear whether the Pacers would accept taking on a large, long-term deal like Deng’s.

While we don’t know if a trade will ultimately come together, this will certainly be a story to watch this summer.

You May Also Like

Lakers News: Kevin Durant Appreciates Brandon Ingram Comparisons

Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant said he appreciates Los Angeles Lakers young forward Brandon Ingram being compared to him as he sees it as well…

Team USA Basketball vs. Argentina Semi-Final Highlights | Olympic Videos

Team USA gears up for a re-match vs. Argentina in these London…

Lou Williams Missing Clippers Seeding Game Against Lakers Due To NBA Quarantine

The NBA restart in Orlando is about to get underway with seeding games, and the league wasted no time matching…

Lakers Rumors: L.A. Still Trying To Get Meeting With Kevin Durant

Free agency is set to begin at midnight on July 1 and the most sought after player will be Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant…